Germany to pay $1.3 billion reparations for role in 1904-1908 Namibian genocide
London, May 29, 2021 (AltAfrica)-After nearly six years of back-and-forth between the Germany and Namibia Germany has announced that it will pay Namibia a total of $1.3 billion as reparations for role in genocide in Namibia
Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas announced the reparation pay-out and officially recognized and apologized for the Namibian genocide of the Herero and Nama people from 1904-1908.
In an attempt to “to find a common path to genuine reconciliation in memory of the victims,” Germany intends to give $1.3 billion in reparations according to its minister.
The German Empire ruled German South West Africa, now known as Namibia, from 1884 to 1914. Both countries have been in constant contact since 2015 to work towards a solution and talk openly about the events “without sparing or glossing over,” said Maas.
In 2019, Germany returned century-old stolen artifacts such as a Bible and a whip to Namibia. The return of artifacts was an early gesture of the coming genocide recognition by Germany.
“These are very positive developments in light of a very long process that has been accelerated over the past five years,” said the Namibian Press Secretary Alfredo Hengari to CNN in a statement on the recognition of the German atrocities as a genocide.
“This is an important process in terms of healing those wounds,” added the secretary.
Although the Namibian government has accepted the German apology, representatives of the Herero and Nama groups blame the Namibian government for exploiting their struggles for profit.
“This is a sellout job by the Namibian government. The government has betrayed the cause of my people,” said a representative of the Herero people in a statement to CNN.
During the four year Namibian Genocide, German troops killed 80,000 Herero and Nama people after they tried to resist German colonization.